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Delhi's AQI remains 'very poor' despite wind speed picking up

NEW DELHI: Wind speed increased significantly but pollution levels in Delhi were back in the 'very poor' category on Wednesday as the Central Pollution Control Board recorded the air quality index (AQI) at 350. While the AQI had dropped to 299 on Tuesday evening from 362 on Monday, the PM2.5 and PM10 levels have again seen an increase on Wednesday. In the morning, PM10 was registered at 335 and PM2.5 was recorded at 201.
The air quality in Delhi witnessed a slump on Saturday, but it gradually improved on Monday. However, the condition is again deteriorating, as per fresh trends observed in the morning.
Weather experts also confirmed that areas close to the Delhi Technical University (DTU) had the worst air quality on Wednesday, with the AQI monitor recording PM2.5 at 497. Anand Vihar and RK Puram were two of the most polluted after DTU area. On Monday, the Delhi government had again issued a health advisory, urging school authorities from conducting outdoor activities. The air pollution level is expected to rise over the next three days in Delhi.
Meanwhile, the Indian Meteorological Department on its website confirmed that the sky will stay clear for two days, with chances of fog build-up on Friday. Visibility has taken a massive dip due to the mist observed in the morning, and more than 20 trains were delayed in the morning.
"As the wind speed increased, it flushed out pollutants and moisture. With a clear sky and the sun shining brightly, the mixing height increased, allowing the pollutants to disperse faster," said an official of CPCB.
The official also added that until the Capital gets a non-fluctuating wind speed, this condition will stay. He also pointed out that the temperature of Delhi is also not decreasing the way it was happening in the last week.
However, the wind pattern is expected to change as a fresh Western Disturbance is approaching the Western Himalayas. Now, south-westerly winds have started blowing over the region. These winds are light in nature.
"Thus, Delhi Pollution is expected to witness an increase very soon. Moisture levels will also witness an increase resulting in high humidity levels. Pollution levels have already increased in Delhi and the NCR region with the air quality index being above 400 in parts of the national capital on Monday," said the official. The agencies also predicted that the air quality is likely to worsen in the coming days.

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